Seeing the trend in a record number of colleges and universities dropping the SAT/ACT essay requirement, Governor Jerry Brown vetoed a bill that would have required schools to do the testing as 11th grade requirement.
Universities such as Brown and Yale had opted to no longer require the essay portion in response to the nineteen states that pay for schools to administer the tests and that have funded the ACT/SAT testing for students but did not include the writing portion. Those students would then need to take the exams over again to complete the essay portion if their school required it. It was apparently a big enough issue that many colleges and universities have decided to drop the requirement. Additionally, there is confusion over the new scoring formula for SAT tests that have also led colleges and universities to drop the requirement.
All of that said, I am curious as to why nineteen states have traditionally funded the testing while California has not. It may not even matter at this point as we are now learning the California State University system is considering dropping the test scores altogether, another possible reason for Governor Brown vetoing the bill. Chancellor Timothy P. White questioned whether the scores were a valid predictor of student success and wants to study the matter to see if they will move forward in doing away with the requirement. It should be noted that the article states that past studies have shown that the tests are not an accurate predictor of college readiness or successfulness.
In many cases, these tests have put many students at risk of not attending the schools of their choice despite great grades. Students are sometimes so anxious about the test that they make themselves sick. In far too many cases, the test requirement has kept kids out of college altogether. Many students cannot afford the price of the tests, and as result, they have missed out on applying for college. I would be totally okay with the UC/Cal system doing away with the requirement and using grades as a true indicator of future student success.
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